This guide will contain information that may be helpful to you as a Priest Healer in the Cataclysm dungeon and raid environment, which is exclusively designed for Molten. You will know which stats are important, key talents and spell, the rotation/healing method, and much more. This guide will be updated and improved regularly as new updates happen on our server.
- Problems Faced by a Holy Priest
- Talent Overview
- Gems & Enchants
Unless you get the end-game gears, you will get several mana issues whenever healing a dungeon/raid. Something seems to be costly, everything seem to be costly, thus forcing you to reserve your mana a lot and prevent yourself from pulling out the best healing performance you can do. Shadowfiend, Hymn of Hope, and 50% combat mana regeneration from Spirit are the 3 main sources of your mana gain during combat.
Transitioning from a Dungeon Healer to a Raid Healer
For Priests who finished their dungeon healing duty and start to working on raid healing, they have tendency to feel nervous and casting unneeded healing spell, fearing a raid member will die and he will get removed from raid because of that. Remember that you are not the only healer in your raid group, and judged from the spells you have, people prefer to see you as a raid healer doing AoE heal when itís the time. Start forgetting your Flash Heal spam habit and work on group healing spells.
Once you become a raid healer, sometimes you feel disappointed when you had performed the best healing performance for your raid group but in the Recount statistic you never get into the peak of Healing Done (people judge healersí performance in an encounter based on Recount sadly). Plus the mana status you have compared with other classes clearly shows that they provide more Healing Done than your own with less mana spent.
Dungeon Healing Talent
Surge of Light: the rates you will use Flash Heal on dungeons is high. You will use Flash Heal to heal almost all the time. An extra FH, no mana cost and instant, helps your healing duty
Veiled Shadows: the cooldown reduction of your Fade helps avoid mobs which are chasing on you due to your healing agro. The Shadowfiend cooldown reduction also helps you regain mana faster without drinking, even when you are in combat bug (CB)
Blessed Resilience: since decades ago many players even on retail keep mentioning this talent as PvP talent, but if you review again this talent description and the actual situation happen in Cataclysm dungeons, you will prefer to have this so you will be easier to be healed fully. Combined by Binding Heal, you will feel comfortable healing people without worrying your own HP (check Rotation section)
Note: this talent sometimes doesn't work with non-player damage
Raid Healing Talent
Talents circled with purple are OPTIONAL
Circle of Healing: heals up to 6 members (when glyphed) instantly. Use this whenever off cooldown. Check Rotation section how to utilize it properly for maximum result
Heavenly Voice: when specced this one, your Divine Hymn will provide around a total of 300k-500k Healing Done within 8 seconds duration every 3 minutes, and increasing the healing received for your raid members by 10% everytime the healing tick received, which becomes the key spell for Holy Priest in raid
Lightwell: only smart players will use Lightwell, so make sure people around you will truly have commitment to use it before you spec this one. Itís already become an ancient issue around Priest healers that raid members often ignore Lightwell. They are busy DPSing and have no time to move their mouse cursor to click it. Blizzard improves the Lightwell in Cataclysm by making it clickable from distances (40 yards) but still it wonít change the fact that people (especially pugs) rarely use it and sometimes abuse it when out of combat
Surge of Light: useful for single target healing while in raid, (Shannox, Baleroc, etc.)
Blessed Resilience: this talent should be good but if you want to maximize your capability in raid, you may unpick this talent and pick other optional talents
Note: this talent sometimes doesn't work with non-player damage
Divine Touch + Rapid Renewal: many Priests don't use Renew a lot since mana cost is too high. If you use Renew for tank only, you don't really need these talents. If you spam Renew a lot to many members, these are good additions
Body and Soul: useful when you are needed to move faster for small moment (Ragnaros, Alysrazor, Chimaeron, Atramedes, etc.)
Glyph of Prayer of Healing: spamming PoH to as many groups as possible will grant this HoT to each members which is really good
Glyph of Renew: if you use Renew a lot, you will use this glyph. Check Rotation section to know the appropriate time to use Renew
Glyph of Flash Heal: useful for dungeon healing, as well as raid healing. Unlike WotLK, Cataclysm dungeons bring party members into difficult and critical situation on mobs and boss encounters which requires you to use Flash Heal a lot. On raids when you have to do triage healing during critical moment, this glyph helps you handle the situation
Glyph of Guardian Spirit: rarely happen when you need to use GS more than one time during a boss encounter (mostly used at the last phase of most boss encounters) but just in case you will need to use Guardian Spirit more than one time, this glyph is a wise choice
Glyph of Lightwell: when you take Lightwell talent, you will prefer this talent compared to Glyph of Renew / Glyph of Guardian Spirit to maximize the usage of your Lightwell
Glyph of Circle of Healing: as a raid healer you will use CoH almost all the time whenever itís available. This is not a good glyph for dungeon healer
Glyph of Prayer of Mending: make your PoM heals larger on initial target
Glyph of Holy Nova: useful for healing on the move situation. Check Rotation section for more information
Glyph of Mass Dispel: some encounters require you to cast Mass Dispel, especially in dungeon instances. This glyph helps you cast the spell faster so you can continue doing important things
Glyph of Fade: useful for dungeon healing to avoid healing agro on mobs
Glyph of Levitate: the reagent for Levitate without the glyph requires you to farm some mobs in specific zones. So better use this glyph without wasting your time farming the reagent or wasting your bag slots.
Glyph of Fortitude: when you are in combat, sometimes you are asked to rebuff in case someone miss the buff, or suddenly combat resurrected and need rebuff. Reducing the mana cost of this buff will save your mana.
Glyph of Shadowfiend: rarely happen to see Shadowfiend dies from something, but nothing is impossible so instead of regretting later while in combat for seeing your Shadowfiend dies unexpectedly and not giving full mana potential for you, better glyph this one.
Intellect: This stat gives spell power, mana pool, and small critical chance. This is the most important stat for you, so you will want to have Flask/Scroll/Well Feed buff related to this stat.Intellect > Spell Power > Spirit > *Haste/Mastery > Critical Strike
Spell Power: This stat usually found in trinket and PvP gear. As you already know, SP increases the amount of all your healing done.
Spirit: Spirit helps mana regenerations while/while not in combat. During a combat, 50% of your spirits work and actively generates mana. It helps you for long duration fight. Always focus on this stat if you are a dungeon healer with mana issue.
Haste: This stat makes some usefulness. The casting speed of all healing spell will be faster, your Renew will tick faster, Divine Hymn will tick faster (rumored to be not working in Molten), so do Hymn of Hope. 12.5% haste is the cap to get an additional Renew tick so you should aim on this number IF you truly care about Renew healing (check Rotation to see how useful Renew is for you to use in raid environment).
Also take a note that in raids with Heroic difficulty, Haste is somewhat better than other stats as you need to give a fast heal to raid member since they are most likely brought into critical health frequently.
If you are a raid healer and want to get the best possible stats benefit, you can let your passive/unbuffed Haste sitting at low percentage and get the Haste stats from raid buffs, combined with Darkness talent to achieve 12.5% (even more) pretty easily so you can allocate your Haste to other useful stats like Mastery, Spirit, etc. if possible.
If you have Atonement/AA Discipline off-spec and share the same gears with your Holy spec, you can focus more on this stat.
Mastery: Most people prefer Haste than Mastery, but actually Mastery gives real-time healing (called Echo of Light) if you know how to utilize it properly (check Rotation section to know how Mastery take part on healing showdown). Unlike Haste, you canít get this stat from anywhere else other than your gears (the gear stat, enchants, and gems). If you sometimes get lag in-game (commonly happen in Molten) or having bad latency due to ISP/geographic issue, Mastery helps your healing as the healing done per tick happens on server-side.
If you have Shield/non-AA Discipline off-spec and share the same gears with your Holy spec, you can focus more on this stat.
Critical Strike: Increase the chance your healing spell critted, good for direct healing (specifically tank healing) but Priest is preferred to be a raid healer. Check Rotation for more explanation.
Donít forget to activate your Chakra state upon entering an instance, because it keeps resetting upon changing zone
This mode is designed for single target and direct healing. You can read the description in-game for more information. Enabling this mode will grant you a new healing spell: Holy Word: Serenity which heals almost as same as Flash Heal (a bit lower) instantly with around 1% mana cost. Use this as a filler of your Flash/Binding/Greater Healer whenever the casting finished to increase EoL heal amount per tick. Or you can just spam it whenever it's off cooldown to small heal players during regular mob fights.
This mode is designed for AoE healing. You can read the description in-game for more information. Enabling this mode will grant you a new healing spell: Holy Word: Sanctuary which heals quite a lot if people can manage to stack inside the heal area together. Mana cost is too high and going to be a waste if not used properly. The only important part of this Chakra mode is the cooldown reduction of CoH and 15% more healing done with AoE healing spells like CoH, PoH.
Experience and Expectations
First of all, you have to understand the situation and what will happen to your party/raid members. It means that you need past experience on the instances where you are going to heal the group at. With the experience you have, you will understand what rotation you should use effective and efficient. You will not always become the healer who need to heal at new places. Being used to similar situation happened in your previous run can help you determine the most effective and efficient method of healing.
Think what should be casted next when channeling a spell
You shouldnít let your character remain idle and sit like an AFKer even just for 1-2 seconds, and thinking what spell you should cast. Keep casting spell and while the channeling bar is moving, start thinking what spell you should cast next by watching the HP condition of all of your group members, the buffs you have, the encounter events, etc.
Spell focus: Flash Heal, Binding Heal, Holy Word: Serenity, Greater Heal, Prayer of Mending, Prayer of Healing, Circle of Healing, Fade
Enable Inner Fire and a desired Chakra state based on situation, Serenity is recommended due to the single target healing effectiveness. Always put Renew on tank (donít do it if you have mana issue), refresh it with Flash/Binding Heal or HW: Serenity (Chakra: Serenity state). Shoot Prayer of Mending on a player and refresh it whenever itís charge is empty/running out, or when your Divine Fire (mana buff from Tier 12 2p set bonus) buff duration is about to end.
When healing a dungeon, ALL of your party members (including tank and yourself) will be your own responsibility alone. You will use Flash Heal to heal tank and DPSers, but when you know you are getting some damage as well (or know you will get a damage from your past experience at the same situation), you should use Binding Heal. Why?
- Flash Heal and Binding Heal uses the same mana amount and casting time. Flash Heal does larger healing done to one target for sure, but Binding Heal does 60-80% of the Flash Heal amount to your target, and to yourself as well (not split/shared). Binding Heal creates 2 EoLs effect (stacking Mastery will give a better result) on 2 targets (you and your target) which again increase the healing done and effectiveness. Letting EoLs ticks will give time for Spirit to fill your mana slightly for some moments, or when you have to heal other player(s) after dealt with the previous healed target.
- Binding Heal prevents you to get confused and panicked when you suddenly get an unexpected damage. Combined with Blessed Resilience you can heal up yourself without having to cast Flash/Greater Heal on yourself and letting others not getting healed (in case other members are injured).
- Binding Heal saves your mana so you will not spend another mana to heal yourself with Flash Heal.
Casting Flash Heal or Binding Heal will give you Serendipity buff. This buff decrease the mana cost and casting time of your next Greater Heal or Prayer of Healing. To be a wise healer, donít always think you have to spend this buff immediately like DKís Killing Machine. Just reserve this buff for later use and when bad things finally happen:
- use Greater Heal on someone who badly injured/suddenly get a lot of damages and about to die
- use Prayer of Healing when groups (3-5 players) need your heals
When you are casting PoH, immediately cast CoH as soon as the casting of PoH finished, reason is to increase EoLs heal amount per tick (stacking Mastery will give a better result). This EoL with Glyph of PoH will become a very strong HoT for your party group, cheaper and more effective than Renew.
As you are going to utilize Flash/Binding/Greater Heal to perform single-target healing, use Serenity Chakra and cast Holy Word: Serenity whenever itís off cooldown.
Fade spell takes very important role when healing a 5-man party (dungeon) as you will have 1:5 chances of agroing mobs with your healing activity.
Spell focus: Circle of Healing, Prayer of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Divine Hymn, Holy Word: Sanctuary
Enable Inner Fire and a desired Chakra state based on situation, Sanctuary is recommended because of CoH+PoH healing amount increase by 15%. Also, HW: Serenity from Serenity mode will turn overheal easily when casted periodically, while other healers can handle direct heal better in general.
When you are healing a raid, you can give less focus on taking care the tank (as explained in the very first part of Rotation section) so you will not blindly spend your mana, trinket, and enchant procs. Remember that other healing classes can perform better on handling tank healing. To be not so ignorant, you can put Renew on tank, even I guarantee it will turn to be overheal against other healersí spell like Earth Shield, Beacon of Light, Lifebloom, etc. during normal tanking situation.
You will cast Circle of Healing whenever its available and off cooldown, but for sure donít spam it blindly when actually raid members donít need any heal at all. Use Prayer of Healing while waiting for the availability of your CoH. Do not build Serendipity in order to perform PoH, this talent isnít truly designed as a ritual to perform PoH/GH, rather than as compensation when you have to use Flash/Binding Heal on badly injured raid member.
If possible, use CoH immediately after PoH without delay to enhance Echo of Light heal ticks.
Shoot Prayer of Mending to a raid member that is likely to get a damage later, and when you know other members around him/her will get some damages as well (example: Melee group on Lord Rhyolith). Some guides say you should cast it on tank, but healing amount potential for this spell benefits more to non-tank players.
Put Holy Word: Sanctuary on the ground when you know a group of raid members are going to get damage and capable to stack altogether into one place. The appearance of this spell is catchy so they will surely move to the spot.
Use Divine Hymn when things are really uncontrollable. Example when 2/3 of the raid members are dying and none of the healers are capable to control the situation, you can be the one who step forward and cast this spell. You can use Divine Hymn when a great number of players get damaged at the start of the encounter and you know you will be able to use DH again 3 minutes later (example: Ascendant Council). Do not try to reserve this spell and sacrifice the life of many people. Use it when you have to, the cooldown is only 3 minutes if you have the correct talent.
Advanced: PoH Healing Technique
Spell focus: Prayer of Healing, Circle of Healing
As your raid getting AoE damage, spam casting PoH on each group (G1 > G2> GX > Ö) and donít give your next PoH cast to the same group unless needed. The reason:
- We will utilize EoL and Glyph of PoH as the HoTs for group member, so when you cast the next PoH to other group, the previously healed group will get the shower of your HoT. The moment their HoTs expired, that time you can fire PoH again to the group.
- Do not afraid the group will die if you just cast PoH one time to that group, since you are not the only healer in the raid.
- If indeed the group need more PoH from you and canít be left with the HoTs (mostly 10-man raid) then feel free to cast PoH again to that group.
You donít have to aim for Serendipity buff when healing raid or doing PoH spam. The triage healing mechanism requires you to prioritize your heal on someone who truly need a focused heal, instead of just spamming AoE heals and letting someone dies. Use Flash Heal to heal someone who badly injured, but donít spam it blindly because other healerís spell will eventually arrive before/after the moment your Flash Heal arrives. By doing this, you will get Serendipity buff which counts as ďcompensationĒ for the Flash Heal you made. Usually when other healers are busy AoE healing and you have to do Flash Heal on most injured raid member alone, aim Serendipity by casting Flash Heal 2 times, and then finish it with Greater Heal. Else, continue spamming PoH + CoH.
Remember to use CoH immediately after PoH to increase EoL heal amount per tick.
Optional: Renew Healing Technique
Spell focus: Renew, Circle of Healing, Inner Will
Recently I found some Priests do Renew spam on raids (just like Druidís Rejuvenation spam in WotLK expansion) which mostly dominates the Healing Done statistic in raid. This is a blind healing method because you will just give Renew HoT to as many players as you want without realizing if the raid truly need the tick. Itís nothing wrong to do Renew spam but make sure you use this method properly in correct situation.
- If you have less than 300-500 ms latency to utilize Rapid Renewal at maximum rate
- If you know encounter will get finished before all your potential mana amount get rinsed
- If you know Triage healing wonít be needed, or someone else going to do it (means someone will not get injured badly and frequently, which requires your attention)
- If you have large intellect/mana pool (means quite decent gears will be needed)
- If the encounter truly create raid wide damage towards your member all the time/most of the time, and you have to keep moving (example: Atramedes)
You will need to use Inner Will and pick Mental Agility talent to reduce Renew mana cost, but still your mana will get burned hard.
Other: Direct Healing Focus in Raid
Rarely happen when a Priest is asked to focus on direct heal in raid environment (mostly for tank healing) but it will happen for sure. We can take example about Shannox encounter in Firelands. Raid members will not get any damage together at the same time during the encounter, but most damages happen to single target (damage from Shannox towards tank, and damage from Rageface towards random members every around 20-30 seconds) which requires a very serious large direct heal.
Same like Dungeon Healing, use Flash Heal on the target 2 times, then finish it with Greater Heal, and then repeat when needed. Remember to avoid any overhealing done so stop the heal when the target is at full HP or about to get full HP from other healing sources. Use Guardian Spirit when the victim will be guaranteed to be dying critically, and keep healing the target.
Remember Holy Priest is a raid healer, so try remove the habit of doing Dungeon Healing method when you are in a raid group.
Situational: Healing on the Move
Spell focus: Holy Nova, Circle of Healing, Prayer of Mending, Renew
Sometimes, both in dungeon and raid environments, even on PvP situation as well, you are put into a situation where you have to keep moving and provide healing output, not even allowed to stand still for just 1 second. The fact is that most of our spells require us to stand still and channel them. Unlike Resto Shaman, Holy Priest doesn't have the spell which gives you the ability to cast non-instant healing spells while moving.
Use Circle of Healing whenever itís off cooldown, and when needed of course.
When 3-5 players need immediate heal, make sure to get closer with them for at least 10 yards, then begin to pop Holy Nova. Itís spammable but be careful with your mana. Combine it with CoH to finish the job, recommended at the end of spam to increase EoL healing amount per tick.
Shoot Prayer of Mending to a party/raid member which is not alone (have other player(s) around him/her for at least 20 yards range). No need to spam it so your mana will be safe. You can cast it as well on the tank, combine it with Power Word: Shield to maximize the usage.
Use Renew when someone start getting some damage, or when they are far from PoM range, alone, and/or requires regular HoT ticks. Usually a tank requires it on this situation.
Itís highly recommended to use Inner Will to reduce the mana usage of all those spells, as well as to increase your movement speed.
Severed Sagefish Head: 90 Int 90 Stamina
Delicious Sagefish Tail: 90 Spirit 90 Stamina
Flask of the Draconic Mind: 300 Int
Flask of Flowing Water: 300 Spirit
Scroll of Intellect IX: 100 Int
Scroll of Spirit IX: 100 Spirit
Mythical Mana Potion: instant 10,000 mana restoration
Potion of Concentration: 22,000 mana over 10 seconds, interrupted by damage taken/spell casting
Meta: Ember Shadowspirit Diamond (54 Int + 2% maximum mana) / Burning Shadowspirit Diamond (54 Int + 3% increased critical effect)
Red/Prismatic socket: Brilliant Queen's Garnet (50 Int)
Blue socket: Purified Shadow Spinel (25 Int 20 Spirit)
Yellow socket: rtful Lava Coral (25 Int 25 Mastery) / Reckless Lava Coral (25 Int 25 Haste)
Head: Arcanum of Hyjal (60 Int + 35 Crit)
Shoulder: Greater Inscription of Charged Lodestone (50 Int + 25 Haste)
Back: Lightweave Embroidery (proc 580 Int) / Greater Intellect (50 Int)
Chest: Peerless Stats (20 all stats) / Exceptional Spirit (40 Spirit)
Wrist: Mighty Intellect (50 Int)
Hands: Synapse Springs (480 Int/minute) / Greater Mastery (65 Mastery) / Haste (50 Haste)
Waist: Ebonsteel Belt Buckle (1 Prismatic socket)
Legs: Powerful Ghostly Spellthread (95 Int, 55 spirit)
Feet: Mastery (50 Mastery) / Haste (50 Haste)
Weapon: Power Torrent (proc 500 Int) / Heartsong (proc 500 Spirit)
Off-hand: Superior Intellect (40 Int)
Alchemy: +80 bonus on flask (Int/Spirit)
Blacksmith: +80 bonus from two extra sockets
Enchanting: +80 Int from ring enchants
Inscription: +80 Int from shoulder enchant
Leatherworking: +130 Int on Wrist enchant (in place of 50 Int enchant)
Tailoring: cloak enchants proc 580 Int / 580 Spirit
Engineering: Synapse Springs gives 480 Int on use, 1 min cooldown
Jewelcrafting: +80 Int
Herbalism: Haste cooldown from Lifeblood
Mining/Skinning: Stamina and Crit are on lowest priority
Epic: creator of the guide
Wolololol: banner picture and headers
My guildies on <Care> for the support